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The Chicago Fed Midwest Manufacturing Index increased 0.3 percent in March, to a seasonally adjusted level of 96.5 (2007 = 100). Revised data show the index was up 1.1 percent in February.
The Federal Reserve Board’s industrial production index for manufacturing, however, moved down 0.1 percent in March. Regional output rose 6.4 percent in March from a year earlier, and national output increased 2.9 percent.
The region’s auto sector production rose 1.2 percent in March after decreasing 0.1 percent in February. National auto production increased 1.1 percent. The Midwest’s automotive output was up 13.3 percent relative to its year-ago level, and national automotive output was up 5.6 percent.
The Midwest resource sector’s output improved 0.4 percent in March, matching its increase in February. The national resource sector’s output increased 0.2 percent. Production in the regional resource sector’s food and chemical subsectors increased from February to March, while production it its wood and paper subsectors decreased and production in its nonmetallic mineral subsector was unchanged. Compared with a year ago, regional resource output was up 3.4 percent in March, and national resource output was up 2.1 percent.
The Midwest’s machinery sector production moved up 0.1 percent in March after increasing 2.5 percent in February. The nation’s machinery production decreased 0.5 percent. Regional machinery output was up 2.5 percent in from its year-ago level, and national machinery output was up 2.6 percent.
The region’s steel sector output declined 1.1 percent in March, following an improvement of 2.8 percent in the previous month. The nation’s steel output was down 1.3 percent. Regional steel output was up 4.3 percent from its March 2012 level, and national steel output was up 2.3 percent.